New Year's in Barcelona: Italy, France & Spain | EF Ultimate Break
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New Year's in Barcelona: Italy, France & Spain

16 Days  •  6 Cities

Why Go?

Celebrate New Year’s in Barcelona! Beaches? Check. Art? Check. Paella? Double check. Wine? Check out this glass of sangria! Start this Mediterranean adventure with a plate of tapas under the Spanish sky. Head to the glitz and glamour of the French Riviera and rub elbows (gently) with the elite. Finally travel through the Italian boot the coast to Florence to Rome. It’s an all-out, immersive journey through three countries, with beautiful sites, delicious food, and even tastier Insta-moments along the way. 16 days of paradise—it doesn’t get much better than this.

What are the top highlights?

  • Celebrate New Year’s in Barcelona
  • Get a perfect mix of big cities, coastal towns and historic sites along the Mediterranean
  • Experience beachside nightclubs in Barcelona
  • Explore ancient Rome
  • Chow down on local cuisine, from Spanish tapas to French wine and handmade pasta
  • Step into the Renaissance in Florence
  • Gaze upon the French Riviera’s landscapes and sunsets that inspired artists like Monet and Picasso

Your trip includes

  • Round-trip flights & airport transfers
  • Multilingual Tour Director & local guides
  • Private deluxe motorcoach
  • 14 nights in hand-picked accommodations
  • Welcome Mixer with appetizers & drinks
  • Daily breakfast & three-course Farewell dinner
  • Metro passes in each major city
  • Entrance to the Colosseum, Parque Güell & other select attractions

Accommodations

You’ll stay at accommodations hand-picked by our team of local experts, in rooms only for EF Ultimate Break travelers. Each property is located in a safe, convenient area. You’ll receive your exact accommodations 30 days before your trip departs.


Click **here **for examples of where you'll stay.

Flights

Admit it, booking flights is the worst. Here's why you should let us do it for you:


  • Flight costs are included in your monthly payment plan, so you can pay over time
  • Airport transfers are included, so we’ll be waiting, sign in hand
  • Flights are booked with major airlines
  • 24/7 support no matter what time zone you’re in
  • One checked bag included on most flights
  • Option to make changes to your trip up to 99 days before departure

Booking with a friend? Let us know and we’ll do our best to make sure you’re on the same flight. Still want to book your own flights? That’s cool, simply select ‘No flights included’ instead of your departure city in the ‘Flights from’ dropdown.

Itinerary

Day 1: Overnight flight to Spain

Board your overnight flight to Spain, home of all-night fiestas, incredible food, and naps after lunch. Get some shut-eye because your life is about to get loco.

Day 2: Arrive in Barcelona

Board your overnight flight to Spain, home of all-night fiestas, incredible food, and naps after lunch. Get some shut-eye because your life is about to get loco.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Meet an EF representative at the airport.
  • Transfer to your accommodation and check in.
  • Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director.
  • Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive.

In the evening, it’s time for your Welcome Mixer. Enjoy appetizers and drinks with fellow travelers at an authentic local spot. Afterwards, you’re free to take the party elsewhere!

Day 3: Tour Barcelona + Optional Sagrada Familia Excursion + New Year's Celebration

Barcelona is so well known for its architecture, we decided to dedicate a whole day to showing you the best of it. You’ll follow a local guide by coach and foot through several neighborhoods, all with their own unique flavor. You’ll visit a church that’s been under construction since before your great-grandparents were born, a colorful ceramic salamander welcoming you into a park, and a stadium where really athletic people from around the world competed for the gold in 1992.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Explore the Gothic Quarter with your guide. Don't forget your black eyeliner (cue crickets).
  • Visit one of Antoni Gaudí's greatest work of modernist art, Parque Güell. This colorful park is adorned with tilework, dreamlike structures and not a straight line in sight.
  • Head up to Montjuïc, a hill overlooking Barcelona where the 1992 Olympic Games took place (and where you’ll be out of breath from walking up said hill).
  • Check out the unfinished Sagrada Familia cathedral, where Gaudí began construction over 100 years ago.
  • Count down to New Year’s in style—with dinner, drinks, and a toast at midnight. Then, keep the party going as late as you want.

Free Time Suggestions
OverARCHing Theme: The Arc de Triomf was built as the main entrance for the 1888 Barcelona World Fair. While it may remind you of a different (perhaps more famous) arch, it can certainly, shall we say, stand on its own.
Comer Little Closer: From paella, a traditional rice dish, to Basque-style tapas, Barcelona has gastronomy locked down. Head out on the town and look for some good eats.

Sagrada Família & Sangria(extra cost)

You ever just start something so ambitious it takes you 140 years to finish? That’s the story of Antoni Gaudí’s yet-to-be-completed Sagrada Família Basilica. Maybe the world’s most unbelievable church—it has been under construction since 1882, and won’t be finished until 2026 at the earliest. You'll go on a guided tour inside the breathtaking basilica, learn about Gaudí’s big plans, and see firsthand that slow and steady wins the race. After, enjoy an included glass of Sangria and snacks.


Please note: This excursion must be booked at least 30 days prior to tour departure.

Day 4: Free Day in Barcelona

The day is yours to experience Barcelona as you please. Whether that means exploring a new neighborhood, lounging on a beach, or kicking back with some tapas and a pitcher of sangria, you really can’t go wrong.


Free Time Suggestions
La Boqueria: Visit La Boqueria, the famous market just off of Las Ramblas, with everything from fresh fruits to meats, flowers and sweets.
Barcelona Beaches: Barcelona’s coast is lined with beaches, each with its own personality. Try party-centric Barceloneta, tranquil Caldetes or water sports at Mar Bella.

Day 5: Travel to Provence via Carcassonne

It’s on to Provence, where scenic countryside inspired artists like Vincent Van Gogh and Pablo Picasso. The vineyards are vast, and the ratatouille (vegetable stew) delectable. Look around—what you see is no mirage. But it is paradise.


Today's Highlights:


  • Hop on your bus in Barcelona and head for Provence. But first, stop over in Carcassonne.
  • Upon arrival, check in to your hotel and explore this seaside town with your Tour Director.

Day 6: Travel to the French Riviera

Leave Provence behind for the French Riviera: stomping grounds of the rich and famous for centuries, and now you. Get ready to feel closer than ever to Elton John, Bono, and Bill Gates, just to name a few of the celebs with homes in the French Riviera. Hint: when you see the Mediterranean, you’ve made it.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Head to the French Riviera, and stop en route at Verdon Gorge.
  • Catch stunning views of Verdon Gorge from pedal boats or kayaks on the Lake of Sainte Croix.
  • Wander through local food markets, where you can look at food, take pictures of food, and yes—eat food.

Day 7: Free Day in the French Riviera

Spend today in the French Riviera doing as you please. By now, you’ve probably realized why the Riviera is nicknamed the Azure Coast. If not, head to the beach and splash around the dazzling blue water to find out. Actually, you should probably do that either way.


Free Time Suggestions


Walk the Promenade: Enjoy waterfront restaurants that overlook the Mediterranean Sea and treat yo’self to some South of France classics, like bouillabaisse and tapenade.


Beaches: Lounge on world famous beaches to feel the fresh ocean breeze and work on that tan. Floppy hats and giant sunglasses are encouraged, but not required.

Day 8: Free Day in the French Riviera + Optional Snorkeling & Sailing Excursion

Sleep in, slow down, and do whatever you want during a free day in the French Riviera. There’s so much to see and do, but if you’re tired of seeing and doing, take a break and relax at one of the many beaches or take in the scenery from a hill town.


Free Time Suggestions:


French Pastries**:** Taste-test some local favorites, including socca, the South of France’s take on the traditional crepe. Step aside, Parisian pastries!


Museums**:** Channel your inner Picasso (the famous painter who did not cut off his ear) and visit a few esteemed art museums and demonstrations—you’re in the former stomping grounds of many influential artists.

The French Riviera: Sun. Sailing. Swimming.(extra cost)

Start your excursion in Cannes, where walking with a monocle and your pinky out is practically mandatory. As a favorite resort town for the rich and famous, it’s the perfect place for you to rub elbows with the fancy and fabulous. Explore on your setting sail to the Lérin Islands. As you sail the blue waters, get ready to swim off Sainte-Marguerite, the largest of the islands and Saint-Honorat. Afterwards, lounge around on the catamaran and get used to living the good life. We doubt you’ll have any trouble getting used to it.


Please note: This excursion must be booked at least 45 days prior to tour departure.

Day 9: Travel to the Italian Riviera via Monaco

The Italian Riviera. Even the name sounds beautiful. This coastal slice of Italy pulls travelers from all over the world to its stunning beaches, quaint towns, and an authentic—and literal—taste of la dolce vita (the sweet life). Before you reach the coast, you’ll check another country off your list—Monaco, the world’s second-smallest (but possibly swankiest) nation!


Today’s Highlights:


  • Play millionaire at a stop in Monaco, where millionaires and billionaires come together in harmony to throw money at mega-yachts.
  • Arrive to your accommodations in the Italian Riviera and take a guided walk around.
  • Head out on your own for dinner, drinks, and maybe another dinner (not unlikely with food this good).

Day 10: Free Day in the Italian Riviera + Optional Cinque Terre Excursion

You’ve settled in to the Riviera lifestyle. Now take the day to explore everything the region has to offer. Bask in the sun on the beach, fill your camera roll with breathtaking photos, or walk through open-air markets. Nothing is off the table today—except for boredom.


Free Time Suggestions:


Hiking: Pick a hike, any hike for some fresh air and views of classic Italian countryside like you’ve never seen.


Espresso: Start your morning, or your afternoon, or your… whenever, with an espresso. It’s really good and really strong around here.

Italian Riviera & Cinque Terre(extra cost)

Note: This excursion is seasonal and only runs from May through September. Availability is subject to your tour’s departure date.


Wake up and head for the coast on your way to Cinque Terre (Italian for “Five Lands”). There you’ll find yourself looking at some of the most beautiful coastal scenery you’ve ever laid eyes on. Discover villages nestled into the sides of mountains as you travel by train between them. Your fist stop is Riomaggio, home to the famous Via dell’Amore, or “path of love.” Next up is Vernazza, where you’ll get some of the iconic views of the colorful seaside buildings that Cinque Terre is known for. Then, spend the rest of your day enjoying the pebble beaches of Monterosso before heading back to Florence.


Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.

Day 11: Travel to Florence via Pisa

Goodbye seaside paradise, hello bustling city. Florence was king during the Renaissance, and it still holds on to that artsy, fashionable, cultural vibe today. On your way, stop for a chance to see one of the most famous, most crooked, and most photographed monuments: The Leaning Tower of Pisa.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Travel through Italian countryside to the town of Pisa, where the famous tower leans as it has since the 12th century.
  • Arrive in Florence and begin exploring.

Day 12: Tour Florence + Optional Tuscan Wine Tasting

You’ve got a full day in Florence, the compact capital of the Tuscany region known for its quaint, cobblestone streets and impressive artwork from Renaissance geniuses like Michelangelo and Donatello. Throw on some comfortable shoes and join a local guide for a walking tour of the city. By the end of it, you’ll be looking up how to live in Italy forever.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Cross the Ponte Vecchio, the oldest bridge in Florence, home to many of Florence’s jewelers and art merchants. Ready to get some bling?
  • Stroll the Piazza della Signoria, home to the Uffizi Gallery and that famous naked guy (also known as Michelangelo’s David).
  • Visit the Duomo Cathedral. Return during your free time and challenge yourself to climb the 463 steps to the top for stunning views of the city.

Free Time Suggestions
Loggia dei Lanzi: Loggia dei Lanzi is an open air sculpture museum, with a number of Renaissance statues. It’s beautiful, it’s in the open, and it’s free.
Leather Souvenirs: Florence is known for its plethora of leather goods, from belts and jewelry to purses and wallets. Maybe you can finally buy that leather jacket you’ve always wanted but didn’t think you could pull off. Fun fact: you can.

Tuscan Wine Tasting(extra cost)

Note: This excursion is seasonal and only runs from October through April. Availability is subject to your tour’s departure date.


Some of the world’s best wines come from Tuscany, and now you get to sample the local product at a scenic winery. Who knows, you might even become a connoisseur. Next head to the town of San Gimignano, aptly known as the “City of Beautiful Towers.” The small medieval walled city is not only a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s also home to Gelateria di Piazza, named one of Lonely Planet’s top 10 best food hot spots in the world. That’s some tasty gelato.


Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.

Day 13: Travel to Rome via Orvieto

You’re going to Rome, Italy’s capital city that is bursting at the seams with energy. Locals fill the streets, day and night, usually doing something that involves eating or drinking. And how can you blame them when pasta, pizza, gelato, coffee, and wine are everywhere you go? Rome is all big city/ancient ruins, served with a side of spaghetti. Stop en route in idyllic Orvieto.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Board your private coach, bound for Rome.
  • Stop in Orvieto, a quaint Italian hill town perched atop a rock cliff.
  • Marvel at the artistry of the facade of Orvieto’s stunning cathedral, built in 1290 (no, that’s not a typo—it’s really that old).
  • Start getting to know Rome upon arrival.

Day 14: Tour Rome + Optional Pasta-Making Class

They say all roads lead to Rome, but once you’re there you quickly realize that all roads actually lead to restaurants. Take the morning to satisfy your cravings and sip some espresso, then experience perhaps the most staggeringly important building you can possibly see in Europe: the Roman Colosseum.


Today’s Highlights:


  • Tour the city’s ancient ruins with a local guide who will show you why Rome is one of the most legendary cities in Europe.
  • Learn where we get the word “colossal” from as you explore the world’s most famous gladiator arena—the Colosseum.

Free Time Suggestions
Catacombs of San Callixtus: See dead people (or at least where they used to be) at Rome’s largest underground catacombs, nearly 2,000 years old.
Via dei Condotti: Stroll this “who’s who” street of high fashion shops, including Armani, Prada, Versace, and Gucci—all of which once charged entrance fees—ultimately culminating at the famous Spanish Steps.

Taste of Italy Pasta-Making Class(extra cost)

When in Rome, do as the Romans do best: cook awesome food. It starts with crafting the dough for homemade pasta, and finishes with a delicious meal prepared by your own hands. Along the way, you’ll get to taste some of Italy's finest local snacks with a local food guide while learning about Italian food traditions throughout the ages. This is truly the authentic cuisine experience you can’t find anywhere but Italy itself.


Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.

Day 15: Free Day in Rome + Optional Vatican & Sistine Chapel Excursion + Farewell Dinner

Mama mia, a whole day in Rome to do as you please! Explore some of your favorite places form the past few days, look for something new, or do as Lizzie McGuire did and fall in love with a local pop star who says you look exactly like his ex-singing partner.


Free Time Suggestions
Trevi Fountain: Rumor has it, if turn your back to the Trevi Fountain and toss a coin over your shoulder, it guarantees you’ll return to the Eternal City. Throw in a second coin, and you’ll not only come back, but also find love. Fine print: Significant other not guaranteed by EF Ultimate Break.
Shopping on Vide del Corso Walk down the longest pedestrian street in the city for some prime shopping. Populated by both locals and tourists, there’s room for everyone on the narrow store-filled street.


Farewell Dinner
Share some last laughs and revisit the best moments of the trip at this included farewell dinner with the group.

A Visit to the Vatican(extra cost)

Hey MTV Cribs, welcome to the Pope’s house: Vatican City. Skip all the lines (you’re welcome) and take a guided tour of the Vatican Museum and get your Intro to Art History up close and personal. Make like Michelangelo and crane your neck in the Sistine Chapel to get a glimpse of the single most famous painting of two fingers touching ever made. Let the neck craning continue as you tour St. Peter’s Basilica and gawk at its iconic dome. A great excuse to go to church, and an even better excuse to make a massage appointment when you get home.

Day 16: Fly Home

Arrivederci, amici!


Translation: Goodbye, friends. Before you head to the airport, make sure to take one more group photo and grab that final drink. But this isn’t goodbye because you can always get the gang back together for another trip soon. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, we have a couple ways to keep your vacation going.


EXTEND YOUR TRIP 2 WAYS


1. Double the fun
Many of our trips line up back to back. Give us a call and we’ll help you add another destination—and save big while you’re at it.


2. Go ahead or stay behind
Extending your trip is easy. During checkout, you’ll have the option to fly to (or from) the gateway of your choice for a $30 fee. We’ll adjust your flights accordingly, but you’ll be responsible to take care of your transportation, hotels, and other logistics outside the tour.


Note: Depending on your desired gateways, additional fees may apply.

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